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Choose a Simple WordPress theme for your blog. Here’s why.

Why would you choose a simple WordPress theme for your blog when you can choose a theme with bells and whistles – a theme that does whatever you might want.

Future-proof your website, right?


With an all-features-you-could-possible-want theme, you’re paying for those features with super slow-loading web pages that are easier to hack.

Why? Because every supported feature comes with a laundry list of files, code, images, fonts, and styling that need to be loaded – for each feature.

Now, let’s dive in and find out why going for a simple WordPress theme makes more sense.

Table of Contents

The Advantages of Simplicity

Let’s examine the advantages of using a simple theme for your blog or website.

Faster loading web pages


A critical metric for your website is how quickly it loads. It’s really important your web pages load as quickly as possible, ideally in 2 seconds or less. A smaller, simpler theme can load faster and be responsive to the user more quickly than a bloated theme which has to load many “features” in addition to the web page.

The bigger themes come with many features like carousels or other visual elements that are distracting, take forever to load and are generally bad for SEO.

Simpler is better. And faster.

Simpler customization

One of the many headaches that come with a big, feature-packed theme is the customization. You’re bombarded with a gazillion customization options that can be overwhelming.

Here’s the kicker: Every single feature, no matter how fancy, puts the brakes on your site because it drags in all these extra files that need to be loaded.

Now, flip the coin: A simple theme? Well, it doesn’t ask for much customization, intentionally. It’s like your easy-going friend who’s always up for whatever.

This leaves you all the time to focus on the real deal – your content. After all, that’s the secret sauce that decides if your site’s a hit or a miss. We’ll dig deeper into content focus later in this piece.

Improved user experience

Simpler themes, are by their nature, simple visually. You won’t find many “features” in the website such as:

  • popup boxes (bad for SEO)
  • carousels (bad for SEO)
  • moving visual elements (distracting – bad for readability)
  • auto-playing videos (annoying)

And so on…

The reader can focus on reading your content – which is what you want. Not hunting down the close buttons on popups or getting distracted by moving elements on the screen.

Higher readability

As discussed in the previous section, making your content as readable as possible should be a priority.

I’ve written about improving readability before. It’s an important topic that bloggers and website owners need to be familiar with.

Cost Effective

Simpler themes are modestly priced. They concentrate on the basics without the frills. Less code, means less time to develop and debug resulting in a cheaper price for you.

Better for SEO (Search Engine Optimization)


Why would simple themes be better for SEO? Because they are faster due to a smaller code base with fewer, or zero, supplementary files that need to be supported.

Site speed is an important ranking factor for Google.

More secure

Here’s the deal: When you load up your theme with tons of features, you’re basically throwing out the welcome mat for hackers. Why? Because more features mean more code, and more code means more opportunities for security holes. It takes just one of these gaps for a hacker to stroll right into your website.

Think of it like this: Imagine a house with just one door versus a swanky mansion with 60 doors. A burglar? Well, they only need that one door left unguarded to waltz into your place.

So, here’s the takeaway: Keep your website on lockdown by rolling with a simple theme that keeps the extras to a minimum. Want to dive deeper into web server security? Check out this article on Web server security threats and how to fix them.

Understanding the benefits of a content-focused blog or website

By using a simple theme without many distractions features (pop ups, carousels) you, and your reader, can focus on the content.

Your content determines the success or failure of your website.

Where to Find Simple WordPress Themes

Check out the official WordPress theme repository. There are currently 11,208 free WordPress themes to choose from.

If you like a theme you may want to invest in the premium features for that theme if available. Your WordPress theme is one of the most important factors for ranking so it is well worth spending a modest amount to ensure you get frequent updates, the best customer support and the best features for your chosen theme.

Official WordPress Themes Repository

There are a number of reputable third-party WordPress theme developers. Theme Isle is one of my favorite developers, they have a range of themes to choose from on their site.

Theme Isle WordPress Themes

Some hosting providers will provide you with a number of professional themes along with your hosting plan. WP Engine provides 10 professional themes with all of their hosting plans.

WP Engine Hosting + 10 Professional themes

Top Simple WordPress Themes for Blogs

Speed it such an important ranking factor that it should be a primary concern when looking for a WordPress theme.

Unfortunately, many popular themes compete in stuffing as many features into a theme as possible. The marketing pitch for these themes is “Comes with 60+ features!”. Sounds cool, right? Not really. Because all those features, most of which you’ll probably never even touch, just weigh down your site. Each one brings its own baggage – code, images, styling, and database queries, the whole shebang.

I personally use, and can recommend, the GeneratePress theme. It’s fast and lightweight – that’s is the reason I chose it.

GeneratePress WordPress Theme

In other websites I have used the Neve theme from Theme Isle. This theme has a number of “starter kits” you can install. These starter kits quickly style your theme for a particular niche and come with content and images.

recipes posts page
Recipes starter kit using the Neve theme

Many of the starter kits are free to use and some need the premium version of the Neve theme.

Neve WordPress theme

Features to Look for in a Simple WordPress Theme

What features should you look for in a simple WordPress theme? Here are some factors to consider:

  • Mobile-friendly design
  • Font options (choose from system fonts and ideally Google Fonts)
  • Customization capabilities
  • SEO-friendly theme
generatepress theme customization, add new font
GeneratePress theme – font manager

Ensuring Compatibility and Updates


Choose a theme that is under active development and works with the current version of WordPress. An outdated theme? Well, that’s like leaving the front door wide open for hackers to stroll right in.

Not just for themes, but for all the software on your server, set it to update automatically. Some hosting accounts come with nifty tools that make this super simple. Keep WordPress, themes, and plugins fresh as a daisy with automatic updates.

Final Thoughts

I hope you found this article informative and useful. Here is a quick recap:

  • Choose a simple theme because it will be faster and more secure
  • Simpler to customize
  • Improved user experience (because it’s faster and less cluttered with visual elements)
  • Cost effective – simpler themes are usually cheaper than a comprehensive all-in-one theme
  • Better for SEO (higher user engagement and faster loading)

Here are some recommended themes to get you started. All have free versions available so start using a super simple, lightweight and fast theme today!

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